November 21, 2017•364 words
The question of the random vs. non-random nature of our existence in essence asks: what part of our lives has meaning, and what part is chaos theory? I tend to think that science ascribes too much randomness to our world, while religion and spirituality ascribe too much meaning. But, as a friend of mine says, it is the job of each of those fields to specialize. Science specializes in eliminating meaning, and allows it to focus on what removing that lens makes the world look like. Religion specializes in ascribing meaning to almost everything, and yields interesting, different results.
I was reflecting yesterday on where we find ourselves in 2017, and the hundreds of thousands of years of human and cultural evolution that got us here. And I found it extremely odd that given the infinite twists and turns, the infinite possibilities for how this could have turned out, reality instead converges onto a set of people that develop an instantaneously-connecting technology that shrinks the world down to milliseconds apart. I find it odd that given the infinite possibility for randomness, a class of humans emerge that develop speed-of-light networking technology, similar to underground networks of mycelium strings that puppeteer the natural world.
I find it extremely suspicious given the infinite possibility for chaos, disorder, and absolute incoherence, that we instead develop mathematical and physical theories that allow us to distort our world to enhance communication (and it's always communication technologies that we seem to develop first, isn't it?). The Earth eerily seems to be developing a sort of mind, and we are its brain cells.
Given the infinite possibilities, I find it increasingly non-random that we seem to be developing a world of inherent meaning, rather than associated meaning. I don’t think the argument of “you’re just seeing patterns or meaning where really it truly is just random” applies to internet-developing human beings. You could have said that perhaps at past points in human history when we were doing nothing with our lives (though I’m not sure we were ever doing nothing), but what’s happening now, this,—this is inherently meaningful. And I’m not sure I can continue to let science convince me otherwise.